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Welcome to the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, Fourth Edition. Some sample entries appear below. Click here for the Introduction; here for the masthead; here for Acknowledgments; here for the FAQ; here for advice on citations. Find entries via the search box above (more details here) or browse the menu categories in the grey bar at the top of this page.

Site updated on 27 June 2022
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Caine, William

(1873-1923) UK author, almost invariably of spoofish light fiction and plays. Of greatest sf interest is The Confectioners (1906) with John Fairbairn, set in a UK transformed by the near-future Invention of a substance capable of taking any shape and function, and by the unrest this substance causes when an unscrupulous industrial magnate tries to corner its use. The narrative is conveyed with lame wit and nonsense – Caine is a poor third behind G K Chesterton and Hilaire Belloc in the ...


As science fiction does best when it is told, it may be unsurprising that the past century or so, a period not markedly friendly to narrative verse, has seen no efflorescence of good sf story poems. There are all the same a number of them, though they are hugely less frequent than examples of lyric sf poetry – short poems in which sf tropes and topoi regularly found to uncover the state of mind of the poet – few of which rank very high in the literatures of the West. This is ...

Gier, Scott G

(1948-    ) US author of a military sf series, the Genellan sequence – comprising Genellan: Planetfall (1995), Genellan: In the Shadow of the Moon (1996), Genellan: First Victory (1997) and Genellan: Earth Siege (2005) – in which an First Contact between a gingerly expansionist humanity and a mysterious Alien race called the Ulaggi ends in disaster for humans; later, another alien race – also victims of the previous race – battles another human ship, ...

Bennett, Arnold

(1867-1931) UK journalist and author whose more ambitious work – in particular the Five Towns novels, the best known of these being The Old Wives' Tale (1908) – made no use of the fantastic. In the 1890s some fantastical tales, and several book reviews, were published as by Sarah Volatile; the fiction was assembled with other work, as Arnold Bennett's Uncollected Short Stories 1892-1932 (coll 2010) edited by John Shapcott. Bennett was a friend and associate of H G Wells, and was ...

Kim, Un-Su

(1972-    ) South Korean author whose first novel Kaebinit (2006; trans Sean Lin Halbert as The Cabinet 2021), deftly Equipoises a Satirical portrait of a late capitalist world in which humans are rigorously defined by surrealistically reductive labels (see Absurdist SF) against an subtextual implication that a Genetic Engineering project (see Eugenics) underlies the patent humiliation of Homo sapiens. / The protagonist of Kim's second novel, Seolgyejadeul (2010; trans ...

Robinson, Roger

(1943-    ) UK computer programmer, bibliographer and publisher, active in UK Fandom for many years. The Writings of Henry Kenneth Bulmer (1983 chap; rev 1984 chap) is an exhaustive Bibliography of one of the most prolific sf writers, and Who's Hugh?: An SF Reader's Guide to Pseudonyms (1987) is similarly exhaustive in its listing of Pseudonyms. Criticized at first for its failure to annotate its findings – so that, for instance, pseudonyms used for sf could not be ...

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